Tobold's Blog
Wednesday, July 12, 2006
Travian Journal - 12-July-2006

I've been slowly building up production in Travian, and now have a village size of over 100. After upgrading my resource production, I started constructing building in my village: warehouses and granaries to be able to stock at least 24 hours worth of production, crannies to be able to hide away at least half of the content of the warehouses, a marketplace, an embassy. And then I started to get into the military part of the game, building a rallying point and a barracks, and hiring a bunch of legionnaires, the most basic troop type. Currently constructing an Academy, which will allow me to research other troop types.

So I used the soldiers in boring mode to raid inactive villages. First I tried the very small villages, with a size of 2 to 5, of which I had several in a distance of half an hour. That quickly made me realize that the advantage that I thought Travian had, that I would only need to look after the game twice a day, doesn't really exist. The resources you get from a raid are limited by the carrying capacity of your soldiers, 40 resources per soldier. So with for example 10 soldiers and the raided village half an hour away, you can raid 400 resources every hour. Raiding only twice a day is barely worth it. If you have several inactive villages to raid within range, it would really be best to start a raid every hour. Of course I can't do that, as I work during the day, and sleep during the night. But obviously other people are more active, and can raid much more often than me. So I end up in the same situation as in MMORPGs, where people with more time than me advance faster, without being better players.

I don't think I will play Travian for many months to come. I don't want to spend too much time on it, getting into big alliances and the like. The game is not enough strategic to make that worth it. But as I am on holidays starting on Friday, I will be able to do more "farming" of inactive villages, build up my village even further, explore different troop types, new buildings, etc., with the goal of learning all there is about the game, not necessarily winning it. That might end with me attacking a neighbor of similar size than me, and waging some real war, even if I know that this is likely to end badly. But just building up my economy and waiting that some powerful alliance comes and starts farming me is not my idea of a fun game. And for really "winning" Travian I would need to be part of such a powerful alliance, and I don't think I have the time for that.
Agreed Kai, I'm slightly behind you but facing the same dilemmas.

I can't seem to stay really interested. I can't do much alone in the long run, and I don't want the hassle of a big guild organisation where anything I could do wouldn't be very interesting anyway.

Doubt I'll play much longer.

I agree with you guys. It was interesting to start out, but they really need to allow the ability to queue multiple actions for it to be fun at all in the long term.
the game is an interesting concept, but i think some UI flaws/gameplay make it more annoying than fun to play :)

they could learn a lot from how the civ series handled micromanagement

I gave this a try too, just based on Tobold's mention. I actually have 2 baby accounts started on different servers to try out different strategies (stockpiling resources before building in earnest vs. building an army as quickly as possible to pillage resources from others). I'm already realizing that the way the game is put together will be entirely too frustrating to stick with. I'm not even a week in and I can't see sticking with it.

I am still playing Urban Dead for some reason, and it's probably got less to it than Travian. Urban Dead you can actually accomplish something with 1 daily turn though, which is nice.
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